Alcohol Abuse: Put the Drink Down
By: Kristine Dugay
Abusing alcohol means drinking a dangerous amount of alcohol at one time or developing unhealthy drinking habits. Sometimes people have one too many drinks when they’re celebrating with friends leading to hangovers or throwing up; this is not that. Alcohol abuse can lead to alcohol dependence, otherwise known as alcoholism. Alcohol abuse is defined as drinking too much and too often, while alcohol dependence is the inability to quit. This means you are physically or mentally addicted to alcohol. You become so dependent on it that it becomes your only way to function with day to day living. Alcoholism is a long-term chronic disease that is influenced by your genes and your life situation.
There are several symptoms you should make yourself aware of if you or someone you suspect is alcohol dependent:
- Prioritizing Alcohol: Drinking will always be more important no matter what condition your body is in.
- Increased Tolerance: You need to consume more alcohol to get the same effect.
- No Control: You cannot quit drinking or control the amount you consume.
- Damaging Personal Relationships: You continue to drink even though it harms your relationships and causes physical problems.
- Signs of Withdrawal: Anxiety, sweating, nausea, tremors, hallucinations, and muscle cramps.
The longer a person is dependent on alcohol, the worse these side effects become. While many of the results are irreversible, some are even deadly.
If you believe that you or a loved one has or may have issues with alcohol abuse or alcohol dependence, the psychiatrists, psychologists, psychiatric nurse practitioners, social workers, and psychotherapists at Arista Counseling can help you. Contact our Paramus, NJ or Manhattan, NY offices respectively at (201) 368-3700 or (212) 722-1920 to set up an appointment.